During my morning coffee and planning session, where I research a little and catch up on some interesting articles, plan my to do list and movements for the day, I got a knock at the door.
5 mins later Ill admit, back in bed (cummon! It is really chilly outside!) I was opening a package. I recognised the writing on the label so was curious to see its contents. I’d been warned of a ‘rather random’ gift on its way. On opening I found a rather lovely face mask pack (a nod to the allergic reaction I got over Christmas when my eyes puffed up making me look like I was competing for a staring role in Finding Nemo for chief pufferfishface) and what can only be described as a Good luck charm in a beautiful blue box and ribbon. A beautiful smoothly ovalled piece of wood, calming and satisfying in shape to hold and roll around in your hands, with Good Luck emblazoned across it in metal fretting and a loop hole bauble at the end.
It will sit on my
desk in pride of place. The 2017 note inside expressed wishes for the best year ever and that she believed in me. I can only say that my heart swelled with love, gratitude, and also giggles. So typically her to put a smile on my face. Someone so enormously giving and generous of spirit herself, and as we all do, with her own set of frustrations and challenges to deal with daily, yet so supportive of my endeavours. This was simply the best start to my day, not only the new year! With new aims and goals in sight with projects coming out of the chest deepfreeze after a long chill period, Ive taken a step towards making certain dreams real and putting myself out there in my fear zone to try and do it.
When any of us start out on a new path or start following a dream, there are many naysayers, not least of all the dark little evil gremlin pixie that sits on all of our shoulders telling us not to, telling us we will never do it, that there are many better people out there, to save us from embarrassment, lest we fail or fall, or bosh it up. He sits there nitpicking away at our subconscious telling us we are not fit for this endeavour, that we are crazy, its going to take too much time, you don’t know the right people, who gives me the right, what about bills and living?………. The little counter fairy on the other shoulder meanwhile is jumping up and down, bashing his drum to go ahead, do it, you always wanted to, don’t worry about failing, you’ll learn more, people will support you, some will like it, who cares about the ones that don’t, in fact all that matters is you! he’s been quietly yelling at my subconscious to stop wasting time, we only have one life, blah blah its not a dress rehearsal.
Somehow fear is inbuilt in us to wage this battle - good versus evil, positive vs negative, challenge vs safety, new vs old etc etc. That balance of life: we can’t have one without the other. And so in the same way I know, that whilst I have wonderful cheerleaders singing their chant and beating their drums for me, there will be people out there telling me Im a bit rubbish or they don’t like what I write or say or teach/ mentor.
Well I say its courses for horses, some will like my writing, books and other stuff. Some won’t! We need the criticism and constructive comments to make us better, to not get complacent, to make us really check on the course we are taking, not to not take it, but to make course corrections and adjustments. We build our tribes accordingly.
I always thought in the past that when someone was heavily telling me critical and negative feedback that it was cruel and un-constructive. I have shifted this view now to realising that in fact it is given to us to make us just double check things and pulse check our values and mission statement as to if it meets those and keep us grounded. Like checking over a plane before you take off, you would always do those checks. You check the charts, you look at the navigation logs, you check the wind direction. You adjust the flight path in line with those things, you don’t just stick to the original route. There are many routes to the same path.
Somehow seeing that talisman on my desk everyday will go a long way to reassuring me and reminding me of not only the belief and faith she has in me and my yet to be tested or realised talents, if they do indeed exist, but the love and warmth of that action. Im happy to borrow her belief in me for a while and add it to the little fairies belief (my inner belief) so as to double it up, and am happy to take any I can find, in fact Im building an army of it around me. Im surrounding myself with like minded supportive people and people who know me, my passion, beliefs and values. Its what we all need to do when starting out on any new adventure, experience, career, or venture, or facing some seemingly indomitable problem such as an illness. I will take the critique and negative stuff as a way of pulse checking whether I am following my purpose or erring off course.
This friendship has been 20 years in the making and we understand each other implicitly, been through thick and thin, highs and lows, rows and hugs, so she couldn’t have got the mark better. Only she would know what such a symbol at this point in my journey could mean. Random yes, full of understanding and love and support, buckets of the stuff YES!